Everest Base Camp In Style
A spectacular flight from Kathmandu brings you to Lukla, and the start of your trek through the heart of Sherpa country. Good acclimatisation is the key factor in ensuring that you reach and enjoy your trek objective. You will spend a night at Namche Bazaar, the Sherpa capital where you can enjoy wandering around the shops, and even surf the internet! Our side trek to the lovely village of Khumjung then takes you off the beaten track, and more importantly builds in an additional acclimatisation day. The trek culminates first in an ascent of Kala Pathar (5,545m/18,188ft) From the summit of Kala Pathar there are magnificent views across to Everest and other Himalayan giants.
Accommodation: Hotels, Lodges, and Teahouses
Max trek altitude: 5,545m
Duration: 19 Nights / 20 Days
On Trek: 15 days
Trek Leader: English Speaking Mountain Guide
- Trek to Everest Base Camp
- Stay at the most comfortable lodges
- Visit the Sherpa’s homeland
- Ascent Kala Pathar, 5.545 meters before sunrise
- Fly to Lukla, the gateway to Everest
- Get the best Mountain View from Tengboche
- See the highlights of Kathmandu
You are met at the airport and then transferred to the Resort, an hour’s drive through the lovely countryside. Located south-west and around 400 meters above the valley, the views from here and the peaceful environment is most welcoming after a long flight. Overnight: Himalayan Height Resort.
An early morning hike up the Champa Devi hill is recommended as a good preparation for your onward trek. Once at the top, the views of the mountains, stretching from Manaslu in the west all the way towards the eastern Himalaya is a treat. Back at the hotel you can either take the afternoon off or do some sightseeing of the local villages and small towns of Pharping and Dakshinkali. Overnight: Himalayan Height Resort.
On arrival at Lukla, check in at the Summit Lodge, Lukla. After an early lunch, take a walk up Bom Danda (app. 3000m) to its village, an ideal way to acclimatize and prepare for the days ahead. Walking along, you get very good views of Lukla and its airfield. Return to the lodge for dinner and overnight. Overnight – Everest Summit Lodge, Lukla.
An early start after breakfast is planned to avoid the rush of trekkers and porters arriving from Kathmandu. Passing by lovely Sherpa settlements, along gentle undulating trails and enjoying the marvellous scenery of the Dudh Kosi valley, we arrive at the village of Phakding (8700'/2652m). After a break for lunch, we continue on for approximately three more hours to Monjo. The sounds of plodding porters with transistor radios stuck to their ears, the cacophonic mix of myriad languages, strange sounding birds, the sight of porters, loads aside, resting outside tea houses, weather-beaten, windblown trekkers winding their way back to Lukla, prayer flag a-flutter, the brightly painted tea houses and of course the dramatic scenery are memories to treasure of this first day on the trail. Overnight – Everest Summit Lodge, Monjo.
A principal benefit of walking as far as Monjo on the second day is that you can walk up the steep hill to Namche when fit and fresh in the early morning. You leave Monjo and continue to the park gates of the Sagarmartha National Park at Jorsale where you complete entry formalities. You then walk alongside the river to arrive at the confluence of the Imja Drangka and the Nangpo Drangpo, which combine to form the Dudh Khosi. Crossing the river on a high bridge you start the steep climb to Namche. Near the halfway point up the hill, if the sky is clear, your first views of Everest and Lhotse come into sight. You then continue the climb, less steeply now, to Namche. Namche is the largest and most prosperous village in Khumbu. Thamserku (6,618m) and Kwangde (6,224m) loom to the east and west and the sacred mountain Khumbila (5,707m) dominates the skyline to the north behind the village. The narrow streets at its centre are a mixture of traditional and modern, with Sherpa homes mingled with cafes, handicraft shops and shops selling or renting trekking and climbing equipment, foodstuffs and vegetables, tennis shoes and Tibetan boots. Don’t be surprised if, after the exertion of the climb and the rise in elevation, you feel a little tired and head-achy. You will feel better after a cup of tea and a rest. Overnight Hotel Sherpaland.
This morning you will walk up the hill to the Park Headquarters and visit the very interesting Sagarmatha National Park Museum. From here there are the first really good views of Everest and Ama Dablam – a wonderful panorama. If you are feeling energetic you might also make the worthwhile excursion to the Everest View Hotel, situated above the village of Khumjung. Although rather an ugly building and out of keeping with its surroundings there are very good views from its terrace and you can have a cup of tea or a glass of hot lemon there and take in the mountain views. After lunch in Namche you head north-west, up the Nangpo Drangpo valley (Bhote Kosi). As you walk up the valley, up to your left you have fine views of Kwangde (6,343m) and the waterfalls cascading off its flanks. You continue high above the river on a contouring trail through rhododendron forest that will provide a wealth of colour in the spring months. You should be on the lookout along here for colourful Impeyan Pheasant (the Nepalese national bird) and small deer. Just before the village of Thamo you cross a side valley (Kyajo Kola) and from there you can look back for fine views of Thamserku (21,806ft/6,648m) and Kusum Kangru (20,896ft/6,370m). Before you reach Thamo you take a path to the right which weaves steeply up the hillside for about 45 minutes to an hour, until you reach the hamlet of Mende. The lodge has a commanding position and very fine views and once reached you will feel the effort has been worth it. Overnight Everest Summit Lodge, Mende.
A small path contours off, passing above the much larger villages of Dramo and Thomde. After 1/2 to 3/4 hour, you connect with the Tibetan trade route and may well in fact meet Tibetan people who come over the Nangpa La (5,716m/18,754ft) to trade in Namche Bazaar. The path then becomes an airy traverse, with big dark cliffs above and large drops to the river below. The path, however, is well formed and wide but do stand on the uphill side if there are trains of yaks passing through. The path then descends to a bridge over a narrow fissure with water roaring below. Here there are large wall paintings of Guru Padmasambhava. The path up to Thame requires a very determined final push! (Time to Thame about 2 hrs) zigzagging across ancient moraine you come to a lovely stream with inviting pools on the left. Suddenly you breast a slope and there is the village of Thame, one of the prettiest villages you will visit. It has scattered houses, enclosed fields and a backdrop of massive snow and ice peaks. Rest and have a cup of tea in one of the lodges and if you have the energy the walk up to the monastery is well worthwhile. Incidentally, Sherpa Tenzing Norgay's house is situated near the top of the village where he lived with his first wife. The walk up to the monastery (3,940m/12,927ft), which being over 600 years old is one of the four oldest in this region, takes about one hour. The main temple has a fantastic atmosphere, and, not surprisingly, the monks smile permanently. The walk back to Mende in fact now only takes about 2-3 hours as it is mostly downhill. Overnight Everest Summit Lodge, Mende.
Today you descend back down the valley. Crossing back over the Kyajo Khola you will take a high, scenic trail up to the left which by-passes Namche and ascends past the high airstrip at Syangboche and continues over the top of the ridge before descending to Khunde. You may visit the controversial Everest View Hotel (lots of good stories behind that!). Situated above the village of Khumjung in a spectacular position this is an extremely ugly, Alcatraz-like building and although out of keeping with its surroundings there are really superb views from its terrace. You can enjoy a cup of tea or a hot lemon while looking out at Everest and other Himalayan giants. It might also be possible to visit the clinic in Khunde and the Khumjung school (both projects supported by the Himalayan Trust). The picturesque little gompa in Khumjung, set in a grove of trees above the houses of the village, is also well worth a visit. On payment of a small donation to the caretaker you may be allowed to see the so-called head of a yeti which is kept there. The trail descends from Khumjung with chortens forming a dramatic frame to a view of Ama Dablam (6,696m), and Kangtaiga (6,779m), flanked by the towering heights of Everest, Lhotse and Nuptse. You descend from the village, first through walled fields and then through rhododendron and blue pine forest to the village of Tashinga Overnight Everest Summit Lodge, Tashinga.
This morning, looking across the valley, you will be able to see the path sloping diagonally up towards the famous monastery of Tengboche, but first you have to descend to the river. This takes half an hour to an hour, descending steeply in a series of zig-zags to the Dudh Kosi River. Here you cross a suspension bridge in the lee of a gigantic overhanging cliff (3,200m/10,499ft). A little way further on is a small hamlet, Phunki Tenga, where you could stop for a cup of tea. It is 2-3 hours from the bridge to reach the monastery at a slow, even pace. At first you climb steeply up through a pine forest, thankfully in the shade, and then emerge to walk up a long gentle straight path that rises like a ramp to the monastery. Emerging at the top, there is a mandala gateway and a huge chorten which you pass before your first sight of the gompa. The setting is nothing short of magic and it is incredible to think that the temple was burnt down only a few years ago and was re-built largely through the efforts of the Sir Edmund Hillary Trust. Conch shells are blown, the monks arrive and visitors are expected to sit quietly on the right hand side of the temple. A small donation is appreciated. Then, leaving Tengboche, your path descends through trees to Deboche where the small and atmospheric nunnery is well worth a visit. You pass further houses and ‘mani’ walls as the path continues along the river valley amongst the trees. After crossing a bridge over a picturesque gorge, the path gradually climbs, with stunning views of Ama Dablam ahead. There are numerous fantastic photo opportunities in both directions, and frequent chortens and mani walls to pass, as height is gained to reach the village of Pangboche. This is a very picturesque village with stone walled fields and there is a very interesting monastery set in trees at the top of the village. This is probably the oldest monastery of the Khumbu region, possibly dating back as far as the first introduction of Buddhism into the Khumbu. Overnight Everest Summit Lodge, Pangboche.
Ama Dablam (6,812m /22,349ft) is one of the most loved and admired mountains in Khumbu. After crossing the Imja Drangka River, followed by a gradual ascent until Lhabarma you are suddenly standing right in front of the mountain ridge. You can walk to its foothill and absorb the enormity of the mountain. Ama Dablam Base Camp sits at 4,576m/15,013ft on an open yak pasture beneath the west face, with the summit some 2,300m almost straight up above. The climbing route follows the south-west ridge – the right hand skyline as you look at it – moving onto the face above the hanging glacier three-quarters of the way up. Base Camp affords particularly fine views of Kan Tega (6,783m/22,254ft), Thamserku (6,618m/21,712ft) and Taboche (6,542m/21,463ft). If your trek coincides with the main climbing season it is more than likely that you will find climbing groups at Base Camp either acclimatising or fixing the route. With a pair of binoculars it may well be possible to see climbers descending the 50/60 degree ice-slopes from the summit. In 1998 an Austrian para jumped off the summit reaching base camp in under 10 minutes – substantially quicker than the normal 2-day descent! Return to Pangboche. Overnight Everest Summit Lodge, Pangboche.
You leave Pangboche on a path which ascends above the village with the sparse landscape now reflecting the height. You pass some yak herders’ cottages and walled fields at Orsho before crossing a stream and making a final steep ascent to Pheriche. The village of Pheriche is set in a stunning position, surrounded by high peaks. In summer months they grow barley here – possibly the highest altitude in the world at which this crop is grown. Depending on the time you arrive here, and your energy levels, there may be time for an optional afternoon walk . Overnight Tea house.
This morning you ascend the ridge to a large chorten above Dingboche village and it is then an easy walk up awide, grassy plateau. The peaks of Tawoche and Cholatse tower above you and it is possible to see Pheriche village in the valley below to your left. At the tiny hamlet of Duglha you reach a jumble of rocks which marks the terminal moraine at the base of the Khumbu glacier. You ascend steeply up this moraine to reach the top where there are many memorial cairns to those who have died on Everest. The landscape is now wild and rocky and there is a real feeling of being high in the mountains. Following the often frozen stream at one side of the moraine you soon reach the cluster of houses at Lobuche. This rather bleak spot was once a yak grazing settlement and was then inhabited only during the summer months but now it is open throughout the winter serving trekkers and climbers and is the jumping off point for Everest Base Camp and Kalar Pattar. Sunset over Nuptse is particularly spectacular from here. It is worth walking over to the moraine to view the moraine covered glacier behind it. Overnight Tea house.
Leaving Lobuche you head north-east, along the side of the Khumbu Glacier through jumbled moraine and shattered rock. There is almost no vegetation here. Even so, small coveys of the delightful Tibetan Snow Cock can often be seen along the way or heard calling from the hillsides. You make several energetic ups and downs across the moraine and descend to Gorak Shep where it is worth having a reviving cup of tea and a snack. Although not far this is a tough ascent of approximately 2-3 hours until you finally reach the rocky summit of Kala Pattar at 5,545m – quite literally the high-point of your trek! From the summit of Kala Pattar there are great views of the summit of Everest as well as other Himalayan giants - Pumori (7,145m), the Tibetan peak Changtse (4,501m), Nuptse, Lhotse and countless other needles and snow fluted ridges. You can also look down on the Khumbu glacier where base camp is located during the climbing season in late spring. Overnight Tea house.
You have the option to go to Everest Base Camp but this will take about 8 -9 hrs of walking down to Pheriche, other wise You will then take the trail back down to Lobuche. From Lobuche you follow the path down as far as Dughla and then instead of taking the trail back to Dingboche you descend to the flat valley bottom. It is then quite a short distance on the flat to reach Pheriche where you will stay for the night. Overnight Tea house.
This morning will seem much easier as you are descending and are at a lower altitude than you have been at for the last five days. From Pheriche you descend to join the valley of the Imja Khola and retrace your steps past Orsho and down the pleasant trail to Pangboche. If you did not have a chance to visit the gompa in Pangboche on the way up it would be worth a quick visit now. Leaving Pangboche you descend to cross a bridge over a terrifying gorge before making a short climb in forest to Thyangboche – watch out for musk deer and pheasants in the woods along here. From Thyangboche you descend to the river at Phungithanga and then make the final climb of the day up through pine forest to reach the Tibetan traders at Tashinga. It will seem delightfully warm at this altitude and the air positively packed with oxygen!! Overnight Everest Summit Lodge, Tashinga.
From Kyanjuma you take a delightful undulating trail with some of your last high altitude mountain views of the trek, looking across to the summits of Thamserkhu and Kangtaiga. You reach a corner in the trail and then will find Namche below you. You descend into Namche and have time to enjoy a bit of souvenir shopping at the market, before making the knee crunching descent back down to the valley. Market day in Namche is a very important event for the people of the Khumbu. In the days before the market the trail up from the lowlands is busy with porters carrying supplies – everything from rice, eggs and beer to trainers, saucepans and CDs. Then on Saturday Sherpa’s from all the villages around flock to Namche to do their shopping and also to restock the tea houses. (NB Namche is visited on a Sunday on our 10 November 2013 departure so a visit to the market will not be possible.) The warmer climate should offer a good opportunity to finally shed a layer or two. You will still have wonderful views, and the chance to relax in slightly warmer valley surroundings. Trek back down the Dudh Kosi valley for a short way past the checkpoint at Jorsale to Monjo. Overnight Everest Summit Lodge, Monjo.
Most people head towards Lukla with a heavy heart. There is something very special about the setting, the villages and the people of the high Khumbu hills and valleys and these memories will help you up the deceptively long, final climb into Lukla. The trail to Lukla follows the main trail as far as Chablung, and then turns off above the village of Chaunrikharka towards Lukla. There are signs beyond the stream at Chablung pointing you in the direction of Lukla. The broad trail, leading uphill to the left, climbs steadily past a few bhattis and the school, then through scrub forests above the school and houses of Chaunrikharka. After a steep final climb there is a collection of houses and bhattis in Tamang Tole, a new settlement a short distance from the airport. As you approach the airstrip the houses and hotels rapidly proliferate. On arrival you can finally relax and perhaps enjoy a celebratory beer. Overnight Everest Summit Lodge, Lukla.
Today we leave the mountains behind and fly back to Kathmandu. Please note that flights into Lukla are sometimes delayed due to weather conditions either in fog-bound Kathmandu or windy Lukla; be reassured that our staff in Lukla and in Kathmandu will be doing everything possible to minimise the inconvenience caused if this happens. Your patience in the trying circumstances, which can occur, will be greatly appreciated. Your final day of leisure in Kathmandu does of course provide a valuable ‘cushion’ against missing your flight home, should the Lukla flight be delayed. On arrival in Kathmandu you will be met and transferred to the Hotel of your choice.
Time today to relax and reflect on your adventures and to complete any sightseeing and last minute shopping. In the morning there is a half-day guided sightseeing tour. You will visit Boudnath Stupa then Kathmandu Durbar Square with its many temples and palaces. You will end your tour in Kathmandu’s busy main bazaar, Thamel. In the afternoon you might like to visit the important Hindu temple complex of Pashupatinath on the banks of the Bagmati River.
PLEASE NOTE: We are operating this trek on any departure date you wish, so please contact us and we will match your travel plan.
- Airport Transfers
- 2 Nights at Himalayan Height Resort on Full Board
- 2 nights at 5 star hotel of your choice on BB (Hotel Yak and Yeti, Hotel Shangrila, Hotel Annapurna)
- 11 nights at Everest Summit Lodges on Full Board
- 4 nights at Best Teahouses on Full Board
- Drinks and Beverages ( Happy Hours while on Trek)
- Airfare: Kathmandu – Lukla – Kathmandu with airport tax
- National Park Fee + Trekking Permit (TIMS)
- Guide, Assistants and Porters (Luggage: 13kgs per person)
- Staff Insurance
- Sightseeing as per itinerary
- All logistic support
- Meals unless stated
- Personal Expenses
- Drinks and Beverages while in the city
- Rescue and Evacuation
- Helicopter Medivac
- Tips and Gratuities
- Medical Insurance
- Visa Fee USD.40 for 30 days
- Expenses occurred as a result of delay beyond our control in case of Weather, flight cancellation or natural calamities
Our treks are led by professionally trained Guides. They have an intimate and expert knowledge of the trekking regions of Nepal and will make your trek a memorable experience.
Temperatures in the Everest region are quite cool after sundown but due to the strong sunlight at high altitudes, it is usually nice warm during the day. If the weather is good you will certainly be trekking in a t-shirt and long shorts or light trekking trousers, and sun hat. The monsoon traditionally arrives around mid-June and clears away by the end of September leaving clear skies, warm temperatures during the day and cooler ones by night. The best time to visit the Everest region is from beginning of October until end of May. Temperatures steadily decrease as you proceed towards end of November and it can be quite cold at higher altitude until the end of February.
Every effort will be made to keep to the above itinerary but as this is adventure travel, we cannot guarantee it! By its very nature adventure travel involves an element of the unexpected, particularly in remote and/or mountainous regions. A variety of factors such as adverse weather conditions, difficulties with transportation and the health of group members can all contribute to the need to make changes, often at the very last minute. Changes can affect any part of the itinerary including overnight stops, duration of walking days, choice of accommodation and routing. Your trek leader will make every effort to maintain the integrity of the original itinerary and minimise the impact of any changes, but an easy-going and flexible nature is a real asset! Please note that all timings and distances given are approximate.